Thursday, June 9, 2016

The Master

The Master stands as a pure Anderson film, as the only way to describe would as a Paul Thomas Anderson film. This is a purity of the style he had been fashioning over his previous films. Although there is perhaps a growing split with this film, and particularly the next film I'll be getting to, I fall firmly on the positive in terms of appreciating Anderson's unique vision. This film is a fascinating examination of a battle scarred war veteran Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix), and his run in with a religious cult leader Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymour Hoffman). Along with Dodd's wife Peggy (Amy Adams) the three seem to represent the Id, Super-Ego and Ego respectively. Nothing about the film's plot or even storyline exactly results as one might expect, or some might even want as the three have curious struggle of powers of sorts as the cult tries to help Freddie and Freddie tries to help the cult. The film is fascinating in this examination of this relationship, but this is never clinical as it might sound. It goes so much further in its depiction of the broken Freddie, and how this relates to Lancaster Dodd whose own relationship with the cult is not an obvious one. The film develops never as you quite think it will yet it never stops being intriguing and engaging through its portrayal of Freddie's difficult journey to discover some sort of peace in himself.

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